Influences: Barbra Streisand, Ella Fitzgerald, Eva Cassidy, Bonnie Raitt, James Taylor, Hayley Reinhart, Birdy, Sam Smith, Kate Bush, Angela Gheorghiu, Heart, Nightwish, Fleetwood Mac, Simon & Garfunkel
I have always sung growing up but the real opportunity to sing started following an audition with agent Maurice Frisco of Don Hughes Organisation RSA. This gave me full on real time practice to develop my vocal skills without any vocal training, mainly due to it being 6 nights a week and 4 sets per night for 3 years. We were daily rehearsing, nightly performing. We would come together musically every day to produce something new to perform that night. I had the opportunity to then hone my voice on the same song for the next 30 days before swapping it out. I would try to sing it each night better than I had the night before. Our entire repertoire would turn around continuously as per our brief, so the discipline of shared reckoning on tapes sent monthly of the USA and UK charts were key to our success with the reward of packed audiences in pretty big hotel & club venues every night. I was performing lead vocals nightly with the same musicians for a number of months before moving on to a different style band and different location. This was all key to my growth. Some band members were readers, some worked purely by ear, some a mix of both, but all equally professional in their role and a credit to the Agency. As a result I have continued to perform with various bands throughout my life, embracing all genres including classical and musical theatre. So I receive a variety of bookings that using different vocal skills. Successfully auditioning to play some good leads in musical theatre eg Evita, Mary Magdalene, Lilli Vanessi/Kate, Lady of the Lake, and enjoying classical vocal training from Jane Highfield LRAM, has let me sing with orchestra's, group singers, and big bands, just fabulous. The variety of skills allows me to perform Aria's like Tosca's Vissi D'arte; Musical Theatre pieces - I Hate Men, Don't Cry For Me Argentina,I Don't Know How To Love Him; Spiritual pieces - Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child; and lead Rock, Pop, Country and Jazz vocals. To sum up I was born with some vocal talent but learned on the job, in genres that were not originally on my radar.
I had been asked to teach vocals for a long time, particularly to youngsters trying to sing rock/pop which classical teachers didn't feel comfortable with. These tutors in particular, along with school music teachers were concerned about voices being strained. I believe X Factor has been a big influence here. It has created a major demand for vocal coaches of the RockSchool syllabus. I helped Jenca School of Music affiliated to BIMM with this genre of coaching in 2014 and have continued to teach since from my own studio, but I like to keep only a handful of students at one time. I was lucky to start just as the new syllabus came in, and took the RockSchool Diploma so that I could teach all grades and bring mature students on to true performance and professionalism with the right promotion skills in their kit box. I get enormous pleasure from bringing people on though it has not been my goal to grow this area.
I am founder member and vocalist within various bands all currently working, this too has been audience and client driven activity and the wish to keep performing and working with musicians, dancers, clubs and audiences:-
Abbaloo; Sequoia, Funky Beatz; Rock The Country; The Optimistic Voices; MacGat Blues, and Molten Jazz. Each is very different to the other. Some of these are still going strong after being formed 16 years ago. They range from 2 piece (Molten Jazz) to 7 piece (The Optimistic Voices). I occasionally sing with other mature opera students who perform to raise funds for the Jersey Vocal Trust, which strives to bring key vocal coaches across to deliver masterclasses to locals.
Above all I love music and lyrics that tell stories. I can do justice with technique on delivering, but the magic is in discovering and selling the story, feet in the shoes, whatever the job.